A facebook friend posted the above picture and captioned it "But you'll probably eat it anyway because you don't care about yourself."
I wanted to smack her, but instead I told her that for poor people, eating fast food is not about choosing to be unhealthy, but about economics. On a limited budget, they get more food for their money, which can mean a lot when you have several mouths to feed.
She insisted that fresh food is cheaper, which I'm 85% sure isn't even true and I told her so. She then claimed it depended on where you shopped, to which I conceded, but pointed out that food deserts are a real thing, often specifically tied to low socioeconomic minority communities, and if you have no car, 2 kids, and no money for babysitting, how are you supposed to do groceries 50 miles away?
She then said "the reason why people are unhealthy is not because they are poor but because they rely on convenience to feed them. you have to plan your meals ahead and you have to make the time. it's not easy but which is more important your health or convenience." to which I facepalmed because it's so incredible reductive and dismissive. She also added that poor people are unhealthy because they don't want to cook.
I've decided I'm stepping away from the conversation because she is making me so ragey I can't breathe. But my last comment was to tell her that when you have 3 mouths to feed on a minimum wage salary, the choices are often between eating healthy, and being full. A small salary might get a family of 4 five or so well rounded meals for the week, but 15 fast food meals. (Spitballing to make a point, obviously). These people are making a choice to not let their families go hungry, and you don't get to judge them for it.
I also really hate her dismissive attitude about people "just needing to make time". Like, you tell the single mom or dad of three who has been on their feet all day working at 2 different dead end jobs, with a 2 hour commute, that she needs to "make time". There are only so many hours in a day, and we do the best we can. And what if that mom or dad tried to add night classes into their schedule so they could get an education and better provide for their family, eeking out the very last seconds of their day? Are you gonna tell them they need to "make time"? Like, fuck that.
It really pisses me off how classist some people can be in the face of their privilege, and how racist those statements become when you recognize that poor communities, are also largely communities of colour. And I'm even MORE pissed that this girl is a fellow WOC! She's definitely privileged to some degree because she wen to the same pretty good/expensive university I did, but my school was fairly progressive, so it's not like she didn't have access to information about this kind of thing. She has friends who probably lived this very experience. Why are people so shitty?!?!?
ETA: This was her resposne:
"while i'd like to sympathize with those living in so called "food deserts" i cannot help but think to a time where supermarkets and grocery stores did not exist and nomadic people had to travel long distances to get their food. Although those who work long hours may feel the pinch in traveling to get better foods, this a necessary cost for one's health. Furthermore, to revisit the McDonalds conversation, if supermarkets are not available and only McDonalds is, it worries me that time is divided from their busy work schedule to trek to this location for sustenance rather than take the bus, as your source says is the typical means to a better choices of food."